Liturgy of the Sunday

Deel Op

Twenty-ninth Sunday of Ordinary Time
Memorial of Saint Ignatius, bishop of Antioch. He was condemned to death, brought to Rome where he died a martyr (+107).


First Reading

Isaiah 53, 2.3.10-11

Like a sapling he grew up before him, like a root in arid ground. He had no form or charm to attract us, no beauty to win our hearts; he was despised, the lowest of men, a man of sorrows, familiar with suffering, one from whom, as it were, we averted our gaze, despised, for whom we had no regard. It was Yahweh's good pleasure to crush him with pain; if he gives his life as a sin offering, he will see his offspring and prolong his life, and through him Yahweh's good pleasure will be done. After the ordeal he has endured, he will see the light and be content. By his knowledge, the upright one, my servant will justify many by taking their guilt on himself.

Second Reading

Hebrews 4,14-16

Since in Jesus, the Son of God, we have the supreme high priest who has gone through to the highest heaven, we must hold firm to our profession of faith. For the high priest we have is not incapable of feeling our weaknesses with us, but has been put to the test in exactly the same way as ourselves, apart from sin. Let us, then, have no fear in approaching the throne of grace to receive mercy and to find grace when we are in need of help.

Reading of the Gospel

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Yesterday I was buried with Christ,
today I rise with you who are risen.
With you I was crucified;
remember me, Lord, in your kingdom.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Mark 10,35-45

James and John, the sons of Zebedee, approached him. 'Master,' they said to him, 'We want you to do us a favour.' He said to them, 'What is it you want me to do for you?' They said to him, 'Allow us to sit one at your right hand and the other at your left in your glory.' But Jesus said to them, 'You do not know what you are asking. Can you drink the cup that I shall drink, or be baptised with the baptism with which I shall be baptised?' They replied, 'We can.' Jesus said to them, 'The cup that I shall drink you shall drink, and with the baptism with which I shall be baptised you shall be baptised, but as for seats at my right hand or my left, these are not mine to grant; they belong to those to whom they have been allotted.' When the other ten heard this they began to feel indignant with James and John, so Jesus called them to him and said to them, 'You know that among the gentiles those they call their rulers lord it over them, and their great men make their authority felt. Among you this is not to happen. No; anyone who wants to become great among you must be your servant, and anyone who wants to be first among you must be slave to all. For the Son of man himself came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.'

 

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Yesterday I was buried with Christ,
today I rise with you who are risen.
With you I was crucified;
remember me, Lord, in your kingdom.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Homily

Mark tells us about Jesus talking to James and John, the two sons of Zebedee. We are still on the way to Jerusalem, and Jesus, for the third time, confided his disciples the destiny of death at the end of his journey in the holy city. The two disciples are not touched at all by their Master's tragic words, and come forward and ask Jesus to grant two seats next to him when he establishes his kingdom. They are worried about themselves and seek the first seats. In the end they respond to a very human and present mentality: first me and then the others. Seeking the first places is still a problem for many. We are afraid of staying behind and not counting. This worry often narrows our heart, others are seen like enemies and we do not think of those at our side, of those who are in need.
"You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, or be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?" Again Jesus explain to them the meaning of his life and uses two important symbols, the cup and baptism. Jesus interprets both symbols in relation to his death. The cup is the symbol of God's wrath, as Isaiah writes: "Stand up, O Jerusalem, you who have drunk at the hand of the Lord the cup of his wrath, who have drunk to the dregs the bowl of staggering" (Is 51:17). Jesus' metaphor means he has taken on himself God's judgement for the evil of the world, even at the cost of death. Likewise, the symbol of baptism, "All your waves and your billows have gone over" (Ps 42:7). In sum, with these two images, Jesus shows that his path is not seeking a successful career of power. Rather, he is taking on humanity's sin, as John the Baptist said, "Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world."
While the request of the two sons of Zebedee unleashes the jealousy and envy of the others, Jesus gathers all around himself and teaches: "You know that among the Gentiles those whom they recognize as their rulers lord it over them, and their great ones are tyrants over them. But it is not so among you."
Jesus keeps telling his disciples and all of us, "But it is not so among you." Jesus has a power that he gives his disciples. It is the power of love and of defeating evil with good. This power is not dominion but rather service: "For the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life a ransom for many." And as Pope Francis reminded us, those who do not live to serve, do not serve to live. This is how it must be for each of his disciples. Dear brothers and sisters, let us follow the Lord to love ourselves a little less and love others more, and to be like this from today on his right and left along the streets of this world; and around his altar let us learn to serve in order to live from him who lived to serve.